League City’s New Farmer’s Market CELEBRATES FOOD, FARM, AND FAMILY

By Ashley Donde

This is my public confession—and I hope y’all forgive me—but I need to get this off my chest: I recently purchased a cute Texas-themed gift for a friend, and…

…It was made in China.

Ok. There. I said it. Buying a Texas-themed gift made in China felt like a sin. According to some Texans, it was definitely a sin. It wasn’t even made in America, much less Texas.

But, I’ve got good news for all you proud Texans in and around League City:

A new farmers’ market is making it easier than ever to purchase local goods, including produce, meats, treats, and handmade arts and crafts.

A place to meet, greet, and eat

The Texas Gourmet Market, sponsored by Associated Credit Union of Texas, is held on the last Saturday of every month on the grassy lot to the immediate east of the Credit Union, on League City Parkway. Executive chef Ben Ross of Ben’s Texas Gourmet Market—a local catering company specializing in barbecue—curates the market.

Ben is no stranger to the farmer’s market concept. He started the monthly Friendswood Farmer’s Market five years ago. He launched the new League City market in May, and it will continue serving the League City area every month.

When I asked Ben why he wanted to start a market in League City, he said it was not just a way for vendors to branch out, but a conduit to bring the community together. In fact, the idea of bringing people together is what inspires Ben the most.

“We center this market on food and family,” he told me. The goal, Ben explained, is to offer a real, personal connection—something we’re seeing less of as online social media takes over. “We’re celebrating the farmer and the food artisan, while bringing people together.”

This little mommy went to the market

The notion of bringing families and food together rang true for me when I brought my own family to the Texas Gourmet Market at the end of August. As we explored, all four of us got an education in a variety of food products.

My husband listened intently as a local coffee roaster told him the history of chicory coffee, and we had an in-depth conversation with a gourmet salt vendor about the differences in salt varieties. Another vendor shared with us her love of hydroponic gardening—something I’m now really interested in trying—and another about the nutritional content of microgreens.a man drinking a coffee sample at a tent

From booth to booth, we met new people and learned about their passions, about the foods we put on our table each day, and about ways we can make our own family healthier. We also browsed handmade items like soaps, bath bombs, custom wooden flags, ceramic bowls, and woven baskets and bags.

The vibe is casual and family-friendly. You’ll see dogs on leashes. You’ll taste samples of delicious foods. You’ll hear live music. You’ll learn something new. And you’ll enjoy a glorious morning outdoors.

a girl and boy looking at cakes at a dessert tenttwo kids standing under a tent

a man and woman standing under a tent

What lies ahead, and how to get involved

a bunch of squash and zucciniAs for the future of this community market, Ben has a lot of ideas brewing, and many are currently in the works. He told me in 2020 we can look forward to the integration of fitness classes and demos, kid’s activities, chef pop-ups with cooking demonstrations, and more.

If you’re interested in being a vendor, keep this in mind: The ideal vendor isn’t just someone who wants to sell a product. It’s someone who is passionate about telling the story of their product, and connecting with members of the community.

What sets this market apart from others is the genuine motivation to encourage community engagement. Young or old, new resident or long-time local, the Texas Gourmet Market of League City is a place that welcomes everyone to show up and connect with their neighbors. This means you.

To become a vendor, or learn more about the market, visit the market’s Facebook page, Ben’s website, or the Credit Union site.

The next market will be held on Saturday, September 28 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.